Oil: America Over a Barrel
Per every dollar:
.43 Crude Oil
Why Gasoline Prices Are Going Up
• High crude oil prices: Prices have increased from $29 to more than $38 a barrel since June 2003
• Restricted world supplies: OPEC: Cut its production by 4 percent since December
• Political instability in oil-rich nations: Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Iraq and Nigeria have added uncertainty in the marketplace.
• Strong global demand: China's crude oil imports grew 36 percent in 2003. The U.S. economy has grown steadily, increasing the demand for energy.
• Tight gasoline markets
• Supply growth not keeping up with demand: Gasoline production this year is running at record high levels, but inventories are low because imports are down.
• Gasoline imports down: Imports are 8 percent lower than last year's level.
• New U.S. fuel specifications
• High transport rates
• Low European inventories
• Political instability: Turmoil in Venezuela, a leading oil and gas exporter, has cut down the amount of fuel available for the U.S. market.
• SUV growth: Sales of SUV's were up 18 percent last year, while car sales were down 4 percent.
(Source: American Petroleum Institute)